Blog - As Memories Fade, New Clinic Offers Hope for the Future

Providence Care Hospital, built with the generous support of donors, opened its doors a little over four years ago. This ultramodern facility offers a creative environment where cutting edge treatments and processes are developed to provide exceptional healthcare supports and services for people living in the southeastern Ontario region.

The newly-created Integrated Memory Clinic is a shining example of the multi-team and multi-disciplinary approach to healthcare services. This clinic specializes in providing support and assistance to adults aged 55 to 70 with complex cognitive issues, including dementia. 

“It’s a very futuristic and ambitious project,” describes Dr. Pradeep Arya, Providence Care Staff Psychiatrist. “It’s a work in progress but it’s an opportunity for a multi-specialty clinic to meet the complex physical and neurological needs of our patients. You can almost delay a third of dementias by early interventions, to the extent that patients never need to go to a long-term care home. This is a great outcome of increased awareness and expertise, and something we hope our multi-specialty clinic helps with in the region.”

The clinic currently brings together three specific specialties — Geriatric Medicine, Geriatric Psychiatry and Neurology. This inter-professional team assesses patients, offering diagnoses and recommendations for ongoing management of their conditions.

“We believe our service is fairly unique,” says Dr. John Puxty, Providence Care Division of Geriatrics Chair and Director of Specialized Geriatric Services. “We’re able to cross-consult, discuss and collaborate on the care of patients who come to the clinic. We hope our model will mean patients are seen earlier and can avoid multiple referrals and extra appointments, and communication is more efficient and patient-sensitive. There’s also an opportunity for greater educational opportunities for residents and students who will get to see a wider volume of patients and access expertise from other specialties.”

The clinic is great news for patients and families in the Kingston region where an aging population is resulting in a growing number of older adults needing support for cognitive problems.

“If we don’t work differently to the way we did in the past, where there were already wait lists and gaps in access to care, we’re going to be swamped,” explains Dr. Puxty. “But models like this mean we can potentially serve more patients and families quicker and with a better service.”

Donor-powered investments in state-of-the-art healthcare sites make a key difference in the types of services offered in the community. “Kingston is just the right place for a clinic like this,” says Dr. Arya. “There is a vital need for this within our region and the right amount of resources and generous donors to help us welcome this kind of approach to care, and expand it over the years to come.”